527 tours in Varanasi

About Varanasi

Known as the spiritual capital of India, Varanasi is a city that beautifully marries ancient culture with the vibrancy of modern life. Situated on the banks of the Ganges River, this city is a mosaic of sights, sounds, and smells that fascinate and overwhelm the senses. With its labyrinthine alleyways, historic temples, and bustling ghats, Varanasi offers a breathtaking glimpse into India's soul. Every corner tells a story, from the sacred rituals performed at dawn to the colorful markets selling silk saris and spices. Despite its deep-rooted religious significance, Varanasi is also a city of learning and a hub for art and music, making it a truly unique destination that captures the complexity and diversity of India.

Travel Tips for Varanasi

Traveling to Varanasi is an adventure that requires some preparation. Firstly, navigating the city is easiest by auto-rickshaw or cycle-rickshaw, but be sure to negotiate the fare beforehand. For accommodation, options range from budget hostels to luxurious hotels, all offering a taste of Indian hospitality. Staying near the Ghats can be particularly magical, as you'll have the Ganges at your doorstep. It's crucial to respect the local culture and traditions, especially when visiting temples or attending ceremonies. Dress modestly, removing shoes before entering sacred spaces, and always ask permission before taking photos of people. Lastly, Varanasi is best experienced with an open mind and heart, embracing its chaotic beauty and spiritual depth.

Top Attractions in Varanasi

  • Kashi Vishwanath Temple: One of the most revered Hindu temples dedicated to Lord Shiva, known for its stunning gold-plated spire and spiritual significance.
  • Assi Ghat: The southernmost ghat, famous for its morning rituals and a popular spot for yoga and meditation at dawn.
  • Sarnath: Located just outside Varanasi, it's where Buddha gave his first sermon after enlightenment, making it a key pilgrimage site.
  • Manikarnika Ghat: The main cremation ghat, providing a profound insight into Hindu beliefs about life, death, and rebirth.
  • Dasaswamedh Ghat: Known for its evening Ganga Aarti ceremony, an enchanting experience with chanting, fire, and lights.

Local Cuisine of Varanasi

Varanasi's food scene is a delightful journey through flavors and traditions. Signature dishes include Kachori Sabzi, a spicy breakfast of deep-fried bread served with a potato curry; and Banarasi Paan, a betel leaf filled with areca nut, lime, and a selection of spices, symbolizing the city's essence. Sweets like Rabri and Jalebi are must-tries for dessert lovers. The narrow lanes of the old city offer an endless variety of street foods, where authentic tastes and the city's culinary history come to life. A visit to Varanasi is incomplete without diving into its rich palette of flavors, offering a true taste of local culture.

Check all the food tours in Varanasi here: Click here

FAQs About Traveling in Varanasi

When is the best time to visit Varanasi?

The ideal time to visit Varanasi is during the cooler months from November to February, when the weather is pleasant for exploring the city.

What is Varanasi best known for?

Varanasi is renowned for its spiritual significance, ancient temples, vibrant ghats, silk weaving industry, and the sacred river Ganges.

Where is the best location for tourists to stay in Varanasi?

Staying near the Ghats or in the Assi Ghat area is highly recommended for tourists to experience the essence of Varanasi up close.

The best tours in Varanasi are:

Guided heritage walks, boat tours on the Ganges, and food tours exploring Varanasi's culinary scene are among the best experiences.

What are the best day trips and excursions from Varanasi?

Excursions to Sarnath, where Buddha first taught the Dharma, and to the ancient city of Allahabad, are popular day trips.

What are the best tours to do in Varanasi with kids?

Boat rides on the Ganges, visiting the deer park in Sarnath, and interactive workshops on Varanasi's traditional crafts are great for families.

Things to Do in Varanasi

  • Experience the spiritual aura of the Ganga Aarti ceremony at Dasaswamedh Ghat in the evening.
  • Explore the old city's alleyways on foot or by cycle-rickshaw to discover hidden temples, street food spots, and artisan shops.
  • Take a sunrise boat ride on the Ganges to witness the city waking up, a truly unforgettable experience.
  • Visit the weavers' colony in Varanasi to learn about the silk weaving tradition and perhaps buy a handwoven Banarasi saree.
  • Engage in a meditation or yoga session by the Ganges, offering a moment of peace amidst the city’s energetic pulse.
  • Participate in a cooking class to learn how to prepare local delicacies and bring a taste of Varanasi back home.